This family of nematodes contains species which are free-living and fungus feeders as well as plant parasites. The latter group includes gall-forming species and several important crop pests like the stem and bulb nematode, Ditylenchus dipsaci, or the wheat gall nematode, Anguina tritici.
The family is characterized by several morphological features such as a slender body and four, six or more lines in the lateral field. The females have a conoid (not an elongated) tail.
The following genera are currently entered under this family: